Best Colleges in Washington for Associate, Bachelor’s & Master’s

Washington College Guide – What You Need to Know

Washington is a cornerstone of the nation's tech and cultural life. This is the state that birthed Amazon, Microsoft, and Starbucks, all in the same city. Though their founders may have been educated elsewhere, they relied on their local area to provide the talent they need to thrive. Further, since these companies have risen to prominence, they have donated millions to local educational and cultural institutions while employing countless students.

You can take advantage of this economic boon by seeking out the best colleges and universities in Washington. The state offers some of the nation's premier research universities, fantastically eclectic small public colleges, and much more. Plus, if you live in a western state, you may be able to attend a Washington state institution for the in-state tuition. Likewise, Washington students can attend any public college on the West Coast, Hawaii, Alaska, and even states as far inland as North Dakota, at the in-state rate.

While the economy in Seattle has been booming for quite some time, it is poised to spread the wealth to other parts of the state. Spokane has been undergoing strong growth lately, and you'll also find new opportunities around Richland, and Yakima.

What are the most popular bachelor's degrees offered in Washington?

Washington's diverse, growing economy is full of bright, forward-thinking individuals who place a high value on education. When state residents look to the hub of the state's economic growth, Seattle, it's obvious that an excellent academic background is the key to success. As it happens the state is home to some of the top colleges and universities, where you can study pretty much any subject you prefer. Washingtonians, however, have their favorites, and you'll find excellent departments to cater to your intellectual preferences.

Washington has cutting edge departments in these top degree fields:

Education Level & National Average Median Compensation


NO FORMAL EDUCATION HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA ASSOCIATE DEGREE BACHELOR’S DEGREE MASTER’S DEGREE DOCTORAL DEGREE
$30,784* $38,792* $46,124* $64,896* $77,844* $96,772*

Best Associate Degrees in Washington


Earning a two-year associate degree can provide you with the knowledge and skills necessary to jumpstart your career in many in-demand fields. It can also make attaining an advanced degree more affordable, as credits can often be easily transferred to an undergraduate institution within the state. Applying to one of these excellent associate degree programs available in Washington will open a number of doors leading to both academic and career success. Graduates will have the knowledge and skills necessary to apply for entry-level positions, as well as other advanced degree programs.

Bellingham Technical College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
1,848
Graduation Rate
52%
Net Price
$6,787
Grads Salary
$43,600
Renton Technical College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
3,755
Graduation Rate
57%
Net Price
$7,595
Grads Salary
$38,800
Lake Washington Institute of Technology
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
3,319
Graduation Rate
39%
Net Price
$8,283
Grads Salary
$41,400
Cascadia College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
2,597
Graduation Rate
37%
Net Price
$8,082
Grads Salary
$42,000
Bellevue College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
12,286
Graduation Rate
34%
Net Price
$9,536
Grads Salary
$43,500
Bates Technical College
College Type
2-year, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
4,377
Graduation Rate
37%
Net Price
$6,869
Grads Salary
$38,800
Shoreline Community College
College Type
2-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
5,884
Graduation Rate
35%
Net Price
$8,272
Grads Salary
$40,800
South Seattle College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
5,324
Graduation Rate
40%
Net Price
$9,159
Grads Salary
$37,300
Walla Walla Community College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
2,940
Graduation Rate
42%
Net Price
$6,770
Grads Salary
$34,300
Green River College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Campus Housing
No
Student Population
7,493
Graduation Rate
38%
Net Price
$9,245
Grads Salary
$38,100
Full Ranking Report

Best Bachelor's Degrees in Washington


Many of the four-year institutions in Washington offer a wide assortment of programs designed to provide the knowledge and skills you need to enter the field of your dreams. Choosing one of the state’s top-rated colleges or universities will provide you with the edge you need in a competitive job market, regardless of your concentration. Not only will you be prepared to apply for employment right away, but you will have the credits and experience necessary to enroll in more advanced degree programs as well.

University of Washington
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
48,149
Graduation Rate
82%
Net Price
$9,661
Grads Salary
$80,400
University of Washington-Bothell
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
6,304
Graduation Rate
63%
Net Price
$8,841
Grads Salary
$75,100
University of Washington-Tacoma
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
5,329
Graduation Rate
60%
Net Price
$10,113
Grads Salary
$72,100
Seattle University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
7,199
Graduation Rate
73%
Net Price
$36,843
Grads Salary
$87,300
Western Washington University
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
16,142
Graduation Rate
68%
Net Price
$18,398
Grads Salary
$70,700
Pacific Lutheran University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
2,907
Graduation Rate
71%
Net Price
$25,368
Grads Salary
$74,100
Washington State University
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
31,607
Graduation Rate
59%
Net Price
$17,931
Grads Salary
$72,300
Gonzaga University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
7,537
Graduation Rate
88%
Net Price
$36,880
Grads Salary
$71,700
Central Washington University
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
11,658
Graduation Rate
58%
Net Price
$16,441
Grads Salary
$69,100
Northwest University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
1,184
Graduation Rate
58%
Net Price
$21,825
Grads Salary
$72,400
Full Ranking Report

Best Master's Degrees in Washington


The state of Washington has a lot to offer students seeking advanced degrees in a variety of fields, from business and law to medicine and engineering. Continuing your education not only enhances your employment prospects but it also provides you with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive as a leader in the industry. Master’s and doctoral degree graduates also tend make more money, qualify for additional career advancement opportunities, and enjoy enhanced job security.

University of Washington
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
48,149
Graduation Rate
82%
Net Price
$9,661
Grads Salary
$80,400
University of Washington-Bothell
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
6,304
Graduation Rate
63%
Net Price
$8,841
Grads Salary
$75,100
University of Washington-Tacoma
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
5,329
Graduation Rate
60%
Net Price
$10,113
Grads Salary
$72,100
Western Washington University
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
16,142
Graduation Rate
68%
Net Price
$18,398
Grads Salary
$70,700
Seattle University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
7,199
Graduation Rate
73%
Net Price
$36,843
Grads Salary
$87,300
Pacific Lutheran University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
2,907
Graduation Rate
71%
Net Price
$25,368
Grads Salary
$74,100
Washington State University
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
31,607
Graduation Rate
59%
Net Price
$17,931
Grads Salary
$72,300
Central Washington University
College Type
4-year, Public
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
11,658
Graduation Rate
58%
Net Price
$16,441
Grads Salary
$69,100
Gonzaga University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
7,537
Graduation Rate
88%
Net Price
$36,880
Grads Salary
$71,700
Northwest University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Campus Housing
Yes
Student Population
1,184
Graduation Rate
58%
Net Price
$21,825
Grads Salary
$72,400
Full Ranking Report